tv [untitled] November 14, 2012 9:00pm-9:30pm PST
coffee, is coffee. hamburger is hamburger, and a milk shake is a milk shake. thank you for your time. >> do you care to state your name for the record? >> karin smith. >> thank you. >> the next speaker, please? >> hello, my name is hillary cronenberg and i am a san francisco resident and i also work in the area. i happen to think a little differently than what has been going on here. i think that if i were to come to where the coffee truck would be, i would be eye opened into other restaurants, and places that i had never been before. because i am here checking out the coffee shop. so i might as well grab some lunch or bring a girlfriend back here next time.
i also agree that it is very convenient with the amount of commerce that is in the area. that we have more selection, and i just think that it helps the businesses and doesn't hurt them. and i urge you to up hold the permits. thank you. >> thank you. >> next speaker, please? >> >> my name is marcus millions and a works at the mall and i car pool and i come to howard and freemont street. and just i don't drink coffee often, but the days that where i am kind of sluggish it is kind of convenient having a truck there as opposed to going to a starbucks or petes. i have never noticed these other businesses but as the
last speaker said, if i came to the coffee truck, and i noticed them, there would be a time where i might come back. i also feel that times have changed and that i understand these people pay a lot of money for their rent and stuff like that. but they have to adjust to times and new things that are going on. and i urge you guys to up hold the permits. thank you. >> thank you. >> next, speaker, please? >> good evening, commissioners, or i should say good night. >> i am ken clevlan with the property owners association of the public policy. >> i think that you heard a lot of the arguments why these two permits should be revoked. even the department itself admits that it has been, or it has too much discretion in granting this permit for this
espresso carts. we have got to look at the larger picture. the larger picture is that we have to protect our tenants and they are facing an onslot of out of town, food trucks coming in in a downtown area which is very densely populated with restaurants, cafes, coffee shops and sandwich shots that are currently there and the city was allowing them through legislation is that was passed a couple of years ago to come in poach, our customers and putting them in harms way. do we want to see more empty food fronts? i think that we need to look at this and these two permits in
particular this is symptom mat i can of our problem. >> the police department have a pedaler permit. they require them that is going to sell similar, that is similar to a store to be 600 feet apart. yet we have passed a law that allows you 50 feet. they are thinking about reducing that to 50 feet. we love you small business mobile food truck operators and we don't care about you, brick and mortar, cafe, and coffee shops. we ask you to over turn the decision, it was unwise, they have the discretion, but it was unwise, there is plenty of opportunities for coffee service in that 300 feet and this is just not right. it is unfair to our small businesses that have been here in many cases many years,
employing people, paying taxes, have been the back bone of the local communities and this problem is not just in downtown it is going to eminate throughout the city and many of the commercial corridors will be affected. i think that you should over turn the decision and i think that it was unwise and certainly unfair. >> thank you. >> next speaker, please? >> hello, i am benjamin miller and i am a resident of san francisco. for several years i worked at 55 second street, before i went to 50 california actually. the same building as harvest and row. i was on the 18th floor. almost every day, i had my espresso from harvest and row. there were never a shortage of many choices of wonderful restaurant and place to buy espresso or any type of coffee.
i unfortunately work at 781 lincoln and we would like to have a food truck and an espresso truck up there. i am also a retail analyst and i have heard a lot of things tonight and i really appreciate mr. gold berg has done his due diligence because second street is really a go-to destination for food because the folks have made it a wonderful place and it seems very obvious to me that the same rent needs to be charge to foot operators if they are going to compete on an equal basis with these folks that very worked very hard to build a retail base and very faithful customers. so i would like to just, reiterate on behalf of these wonderful restaurants that have worked very hard to build up a customer base that it looks obvious that these guys want to just park out in front and it
seems a little unfair. and i think that is the gist that we have heard from several folks. there are plenty of place to get coffee. >> thank you. >> next, speaker, please? >> hello, good evening commissioners, i am jeff hilgore and i am a resident here in san francisco. i have done a great deal of canvassing and political organizing here in the bay area and that involves a great deal of sidewalk street work and regardless of what the issue was whether it was a disaster relief charity or a homeless assistance, political, nobody wanted me in front of their business. there was not a competition, something that i tried to explain, to someone, looking for a monthly donation for a charity is not going to deter someone from going in and buying a piece of fruit. but it is very easy to
understand why your business is not necessarily flourishing for whatever reason you start aiming at that is the reason and that is the reason. from what i understand, the permit requires, alteration and you are not allowed to be in the same spot the entire time. so this perceived threat is only going on for a max, from the graph that i saw two hours a day and several days a week and what we are talking about is one espresso machine. the food truck, it is a coffee truck. like items, this is a very specific type of coffee service. this is street, grab and go, and i myself, when i am in the san francisco downtown area i am on my bike and i am in a hurry, i can't lock the bike and find a place to put it and go through a lot of steps that are required to getting my hands on what i want if i am down there all day and i am going to plug in the lap top and i am going to sit down and eat a breakfast.
places like starbucks don't sell the same thing. there are a million reasons that you go in a starbucks than to just get a cup of coffee. there are a number of days that i did not have time to wait that line is too long. if you look around and you see a line of five or ten people at every business you are out of luck. to me adding one more machine two days a week and overlapping two hours a day, operating hours, if this were me, i would be very, i would feel very complimented that my just the notion of me doing business, anywhere near this area is such a threat. i can't understand how this is directed to the operator of a food truck, most of the concerns that have been addressed are to the pressures
that are already there, than involve doing business. if one straw will break the camel's back it seems that there are a lot of other things that are hampering the performance of that camel and maybe you should look at that and hopefully you will up hold the permit. thank you. >> thank you. >> pe tricia veloy. i have been a part of many neighbors throughout the city. first of all something that you have not been told they have a private permit, and at first admission. going to second emission in california, looked to me like predatory practices. number two, these are the drawings that were presented to the department. can you see this? no mention of the other facilities that sold coffee.
they basically said, we want to be here. and didn't mention it. i concerned this as being fraud on the city. food trucks, i firmly believe are a necessity in different places. my question is, is, do you want small business or do you want food trucks. >> we just lost another business to land lords raised the rent from $4500 to $6,000. all throughout the whole city, we are losing jobs, right and left because of high rents, high fees from the city. $9300 for a year, verses $1,000 of fees, requiring to build 30 to 40,000 dollar ada bathrooms. it is not fair.
and because they have one a block away now they want two more, this is predatory, this is going to expand to china town. it is going to expand to all other places in this city. and i'm already seeing them beginning to try to line up on lumbard but i called immediately. and we need to have controls over this industry. the prices are not less. but what you are really doing by allowing this predatory practices and this is what you will hear from me about, is we are losing jobs. you keep talking about jobs, making jobs, well, we are losing them because of this type of practice. and a lot more than a couple of people working in a food truck, back of these kitchens there are three, four are five people cutting, preparing the coffee, grinding the beans, trying to
in many of these businesses are down to nothing. with their back lot because of the permit, the permit prices and the san francisco, i think, sabotage on the small business which is the crutch of this city. you have your choice, small business, or coffee trucks thank you. >> is there any other public comment? >> okay. seeing none, we will move into rebuttal. mr. walsh? >> you have three minutes. >> i think that we have basically carved out our agreement and disagreements. the issue of the 6 to 10 is crucial because the high profit item which earlier speaker referred to is the coffee and if you are not turning that over, seeing that you are
losing it. i want to add that those sellers not being able to speak, they closed one of their three restaurants in the city in october, letting go of ten employees. going forward, she is no longer planning and they came and chose san francisco out of new york and chicago, at the time that they signed up for ten-year leases and their business plan in spite of the horrible economic issues of the last ten years >> she is not looking to expand and she is going to look elsewhere. and most of the kind of decisions that people have the opportunity to get up and move their capitol and their employment opportunities are making and that is the same
with the bagel place, they moved out of town. and they are looking to expand, no more here. so it is quiet. you know, you don't know your audience is left because you can't hear them going out the back door. >> that is what is happening, you will not measure that until the rent starts going down and the building owners start screaming. >> that is the bright side. i don't know. where we are going from here. thank you for your attention. >> thank you. >> i would like to just talk a little bit and first i am going to put down a map at where certain people were and restaurants were in the location, the proposed truck. this shows a 300 foot radius which is not the same as walking but it gives an idea of where the restaurants are and if there is a way to make it
bigger. there is starbucks at 300 and muffins which inside or outside, i can't tell. the current policy is to allow the food trucks if such food trucks complied with all of the provisions of the code. and with the gpw's guidelines and were willing to run the risk of things like if they drive up in the morning in their parking space is blocked, that is too bad. they have to leave and construction f there is a construction, you know, activity there they have to go. and they have to pay for all kinds of permits and inspections as well. and mr. goldstein has complied with all of the code and guidelines and provisions including the example given in the guidelines. it is hard to think of an example that would be more pertinent to this particular matter, a coffee, truck or a
coffee sale is not the same as a dine , or someone who has a full menu. there were very few sites, he applied to the only sites that he could find in the entire district that would not require or in cringe on any code or guideline requirement. we don't feel that this appeal or this permit would be opening the flood gates to a huge number of permits. this is something that he and his reliance on the city policy as it stands now. did apply for and received. there was a mention of the second coffee truck, he does have a coffee truck currently not far away, he invested financial sums as part of his permit process for the last 14 months. it is not two additional trucks, it is one truck that would go between two locations. so he would be on the street for a total of 12 hours a week
and he would be on front street or in front of 150 california for a total of 8 hours a week. there are one other thing that i wanted to talk about is how people tend to go to coffee that is closer to them. there are a lot of commuter spots. he is not likely to draw people from the vast distances who are going to go past tons and tons stores just to go to his truck, it is something, there is enough market for somebody. with the current policy and we realize that we ask for you to up hold the permit. thank you. >> the counselor, the permit holder owns two trucks but only has one location that is not appealed. >> there is one on a private right-of-way and not subject to these rules. that is a truck that is he
planning to move to these new locations he is in the process of permitting a second truck, if it comes through he will use it on the old location. >> he would use his existing truck alternating between the two locations if the second one comes through he will use it at the original site. >> mr. hwang? >> good evening, commissioners, once again. the departments procedures as it relates to mobile food has always been fairly transparent. through our director's order. it is posted on the website for the general public to review. there is in our process a notification requirement by mail to all merchants and businesses within 300 feet of
the proposed location as i have repeated several times to the members of this board. we also are required under the law to also provide notification if a merchant is working after hours, specifically. and in certain cases check with the san francisco police department to ensure that these facilities are appropriate. in this case, we believe that we are follow our procedures correctly and processed the permit accordingly. and also this specific decision was also a measured response in many ways to the previous decision through what was coffee and then to director given by this board itself. i really have nothing else to add. i am prepared to answer any questions that you may have. >> thank you.
>> i am not sure that i would have equated you know, all of this coffee with quite with what we are talking about. i would say a more appropriate example is the discussion that we had on the hamburger truck nearby on what was it beal? or somewhere nearby. any way, that was more recent than the guiradelli square. the question that i have for you is when you look at the previous... some of the previous cases and locations, you did a fairly substantial review of the menus and of the or what was being offered to make a determination whether it was like food or not in some of
those cases. in this instance, the organic espresso that was being provided by the permit holder, did you do a similar analysis, comparing that to what was being offered in the other restaurants of the area? >> the review, happened and... we were directing this hearing when we received objections there were over 30 objections in this particular location and many the merchants came out during the director's hearing and said that they do so espresso but have not specified specifically as it results to the beans or how they go about producing it. the objection, that we received through the hearing, was exclusively that i also show espresso at this time and that is the definition. that was their belief of like
food. >> but what about the department based on this decision did not feel it was like food here in this instance. >> correct. in this specific case, because we have to look at the entirety of the menu that is provided by the merchant. >> so, you did perform a detailed analysis. ; is that correct?? >> that is correct. there are lunch menus and other types of menus associated with many if not all of these. >> i just want to know if the department did that analysis. >> yes, we did. >> okay, thanks. >> thank you. >> thank you. >> commissioners, matter is
submitted. >> you know, commissioners, we have heard a number of these cases and it seems like it is possible that we may hear even more. in contrary, i think to what was generally stated by a number of the speakers, is you know, their issue really is with the policy position decisions that came out of the board of supervisors, and not by... and this board has very little to say about the over all policy issues. you know, we can only react to individual permits. what is interesting about this case and how it relates to the others that we have heard is that when we look at how we can produce some level of equity, you know, within the law that has been produced by the board of supervisors, we are faced
with the criteria that has been established by this department. and we recognize that the department's criteria has been in development and to some degree, or some level of evolution during the course of their administrative and to a certain degree, perhaps a little bit manipulation occurred from the cases that were heard here. i remember last time, that there was an issue with how they established distances and it was based upon, you know, the sender of a lot. and if they had a specific address, and let's say that the lot was, very small, you know, then it would... if it was a
30-foot lot like probably 84 seconds street is, you know, if you have the center line of that, but the previous instance it was a very large lot and the center line of the stretch for almost a half a block and you know, and that led us to then, certain other things which occurred. and i recall specifically, that if that particular product which was a hamburger then, it not been in such a large slot, and therefore, it came in within the 300-foot radius, or excuse me, 300-foot distance factor it was considered like food to other restaurants who had a variety of foods. and i think that you know, the only basis that i can look at, is when i look at the equity issue of that particular law is that we have to have these criteria conformed to for a
while so we can reach a threshold and see what the impact is. we don't know whether all of the brick and mortars are going to go out of business. we don't know whether there will be even a proliferation of food trucks because based on the criteria there is going to be a limitation on. so on that basis, i am going to make my own determination, which i think that the espresso is like food and it comes within 300 feet radius and i have to vote against it. >> i would be inclined to support you. it seems to me that the type of coffee is a little bit of splitting hairs, as to what is like food and what isn't. and i appreciate some of the arguments about being able to walk right up to a truck and not having to stand in line. but it does seem that there is
like food within the radius. and to i feel the need to adhere to that standard for the time being. >> >> i am of a different mind. i think while i agree with some of the other comments of vice president fung, with respect to the equity and the policy question, i think that is for the board of... it is for our city's board of supervisors and that needs to be brought before them. i think that many of the concerns raised are compelling and real. and however, i do think that it is within the discretion of the
department to have made a determination here that the food is not considered or the coffee is not like food with respect to the other businesses. and i don't think that the 300-feet distance is a mandatory. it is not sort of... it is not sort of the dispositive factor here. and i think that that has been factored in and it... i think that when i thought about the coffee which was already a done deal here, and i mean, it is not before us today. but it was something that i think needed to be considered then in another subsequent appeal. i think that is within the department's discretion to make that determination. others, they are bound in and have no authority to